PLANT CITY, Fla. – Sophomore catcher Christie Bott (Seaford, N.Y.) was 3-4 and classmate Hailey Yabroudy (Amherst, N.H.) was 2-2 with each driving in a run to lead the Simmons University softball team in a 10-3 loss to nationally-ranked number 20 College of Saint Benedict, this morning at the Randy Larson Complex in Plant City, Fla. as part of the Sunkissed Games. The Sharks fall to 2-7 on the season, while the Bennies, who are ranked in the most recent National Fastpitch Coaches Association poll, improve to 8-3.
Saint Benedict rapped out 16 hits and scored eight of its runs in the first three innings of play.
Bott also scored a run for Simmons. Sophomore second base Marissa Santoro (Franklin, Mass.) was 2-4 with a double and a run scored and junior Alex Soqui (Acushnet, Mass.) also cracked a double and drove in a run in three at-bats for the Sharks. Junior center fielder Lauren Del Vacchio (Murrieta, Calif.) singled to center in the fifth to mark her 100th career hit. Soqui (0-1) was saddled with the loss after giving up eight (six earned) runs on 10 hits and a walk, while fanning a batter in two and a third innings of work.
Deming added a stolen base, while McCabe scored twice during the contest. First year right fielder Lizzy Walker (Minneapolis, Minn.) and rookie first base Sheridan Glashan (Forest Lake, Minn.) each registered a pair of hits and knocked in a run, while also scoring a run. Junior third base Kendra Swanson (Richmond, Minn.) was 2-2 with two runs scored and first years Mo Burns (Minneapolis, Minn.) and Codi Zwack (Montrose, Minn.) each doubled in the game as two of 10 batters with at least one hit for CSB. Junior southpaw Alex Smith (Stacy, Minn.) earned the victory to improve to 2-0 on the season after yielding two runs on five hits and a walk to go with five strikeouts, before first year Lauren York (Delano, Minn.) earned her first collegiate save, allowing one run on four hits to go with three strikeouts and a walk in three innings of relief to close out the game.
CSB scored three times in the top of the second inning to take a 3-0 lead. Deming highlighted the frame with a two-out, two-run single to center after McCabe put the Bennies on the board with an RBI single to left earlier in the inning.
Simmons got a run back in the bottom of the frame when Bott laced a leadoff single up the middle and later scored on a Soqui double to right center field to make it 3-1. Saint Benedict started to put the game away with five runs in the third to take an 8-1 advantage. CSB sent 11 batters to the plate in the frame and loaded the bases to start the inning to set up a run-scoring single to center off the bat of Glashan. Following an out, McCabe and Walker struck back-to-back RBI singles to give Saint Benedict a 6-1 lead. Senior left fielder Emilie Antony (Forest Lake, Minn.) forced in a run with a bases loaded walk and an error by the Sharks shortstop gave CSB an 8-1 lead.
Simmons managed another run in the bottom of the third when Santoro belted a leadoff double to center field and later came around to score on a two-out single to center off the bat of Bott to pull the Sharks to within 8-2 after three innings of play.
Saint Benedict added two runs in the fifth to take a 10-2 advantage. Walker led off the frame with a single and Burns later doubled to set up a sacrifice fly from first year Jordyn Swoboda (Willmar, Minn.) to plate Walker with the ninth run of the game for CSB. First year Emily Schmitz (New Prague, Minn.) roped a single down the left field line to drive in the final run of the contest for Saint Benedict and an eight-run lead. Simmons prevented the game from being halted due to the eight-run rule when it loaded the bases and Yabroudy came through with a two-out, run-scoring single to center to make it 10-3 in the bottom of the fifth. It was the final run of the game, though, as CSB came away with the win.
The Sharks return to Plant City for their final game of the day, taking on Ohio Northern University at 2:30 p.m., while CSB plays Hood College at the same time.